13 January 2012

Pedro out for ten days

Tests have shown that the Canary Islander has a minor hamstring injury in his left leg.

In the Osasuna match, Pedro Rodríguez had to leave the field injured. Back in Barcelona, he was subjected to different tests and it has been confirmed that he has pulled a hamstring, although it is not majorly serious.

He is expected to be sidelined for ten days, which would mean him missing the league games with Betis and Malaga, and also the first leg of the cup tie with Real Madrid. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

Mascherano: “Having qualified for the cup quarter final, the most important thing is to keep fighting for the league”

The Argentinian has said that before thinking about the quarter final with Real Madrid, the squad first has to think about Betis on Sunday. But he did say that it would be important to get a good result in the first leg at the Santiago Bernabéu on January 18.

After beating Osasuna and making into the last eight of the Copa del Rey, the forthcoming duel with Mourinho took up much of the conversation with Javier Mascherano. But the midfielder insisted that "now that we have qualified for the cup quarter finals, the most important thing is to keep fighting for the league ... This team is used to thinking about our next game. That's what happens when you're playing in so many competitions. We have to get the three points to keep fighting for the league, and we'll have time to think about Real Madrid after."

Mascherano added that "this team cannot afford to throw away the league because of a five point difference. With 63 left to play for, anything can still happen. And in a way, throwing away the league in January would be underestimating our opponents ... to carry on in the cup and do well in the Champions League, it is important to maintain our level in the league.

But going back to the game against Madrid, he believes that the game at the Bernabéu "will do a lot to determine the tie ... In games like this it doesn't usually matter what form the teams are in. In a two-legged match you have to be cautious about who might be in form or not. The most important thing is to do well on the two match days, especially knowing that the first game is at the Bernabéu and they will want to bring a lead to the Camp Nou. I have no doubt that the first leg will have a huge impact on the tie".

Mascherano says that after so many encounters between the two clubs, "we know each other too well ... small details will decide the game. I think we are both in the same situation, trying to qualify for a semi final against our biggest rival. This is a very important game ... Who wouldn't be grateful for playing in a match that everybody is watching? Barça and Madrid are the two best teams in the world, I'm lucky to be here. I'd like to play because it'll mean I'll be part of something that will always be remembered, that's nice for me. Those of us who can enjoy games like this are the chosen ones."

Mascherano also had some words for Fontàs: "He looks upset after getting that injury. But there are worse things in life than injuries. He's young, he'll recover to play again. The most important thing is being positive about getting fit again."

Asked what Pinto does as a player and squad member, Mascherano highlighted his mental strength for only being the second choice at such a club as FC Barcelona: “He has had a great playing career. He has many years of goalkeeping behind him. It is not easy to be a substitute at such a big club, and especially with Valdés being so unquestionable. He is always ready for the competitions he plays in, like the Copa del Rey, and he does a great job … You have to be very strong mentally, and he is year after year. And he’s always got a smile on his face. I have played in some huge teams, and it’s hard to find such a secure second keeper.” (via FCBarcelona.cat)

Back from Pamplona for training

The team got back to Barcelona this morning and went straight to the Ciutat Esportiva for a training session involving the 19 players available.

The starters against Osasuna did some recovery work. Cuenca, Montoya, Sergi Roberto and Dos Santos from the B team also joined the session.

The FC Barcelona aeroplane from Pamplona touched down at El Prat at about 11.15. Having qualified for the quarter finals of the Copa del Rey after knocking out Osasuna the night before, the players headed for the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper. On Sunday at 21.30 they welcome Betis for a league fixture, for which reason they need to start getting ready as quickly as possible.

Guardiola had his full squad available apart from the injured players and Keita, who has left for the African Nations Cup. The first eleven against Osasuna did recovery work, while the others plus Alves and Iniesta, who didn't travel to Navarra, underwent a more intense session. They were also joined by Cuenca, Montoya, Sergi Roberto and Jonathan dos Santos from the B team.

On Saturday morning at 11.00, there will be another session. That will be behind closed doors at the Ciutat Esportiva Joan Gamper. Pep Guardiola will be giving a press conference straight after. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

[Former player] Quaresma suffered a robbery at gunpoint

The winger of the Turkish Besiktas was assaulted by an armed gang while riding in your vehicle and suffered the theft of money, jewelry and other items worth 44,000 euros.

The exazulgrana Ricardo Quaresma suffered this week the assault of an armed band when it traveled in its vehicle, an Audi R8, as he informed this Friday the Portuguese newspaper 'Correio da Manha'.

Quaresma was assaulted in the early hours of Wednesday in the J Chela three men wearing hoods. According to Portuguese newspaper, the end of Besiktas was pointed a firearm and was forced to give money and items worth 44,000 euros, including diamond earrings and various luxury items.

Quaresma was traveling with a friend but both were unable to cope with the assault against the aggressiveness of the hoodies. (via SPORT)

The expedition is already in Barcelona

Barça has become of Pamplona and the players go straight into training. For his part, was Fontàs wheelchair.

FC Barcelona has arrived at the airport of El Prat de Llobregat, after the game against Osasuna in Pamplona. This time it was not necessary to go to Vitoria and could return from the capital of Navarre, as the fog is left worrying.

The most significant and impressive visual level that could see Andreu Fontàs in a wheelchair through the airport. The club's official medical report confirmed that the player has a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee.

As regards the rest of the squad, marched to the landing ciutat esportiva just as they have scheduled training session before noon. (via SPORT)

Muñiz Fernández beep leg quarterfinal at the Bernabeu

The Asturian collegian will be the one in charge of directing the first leg clásico in Santiago Bernabéu. Fernando Teixeira Vitienes will be the I arbitrate of the turn in Camp Nou.

The referee Muniz Fernandez Alonso will be responsible for leading the first leg of quarterfinals of the Copa del Rey at the Santiago Bernabeu. In the absence of official confirmation, Cantabrian Fernando Teixeira Vitienes will be the arbiter of the return-leg in Camp Nou. (via MD)

Xavi is still breaking records and points to 400 in League match against Betis

The Catalan midfielder, if it is aligned against Betis on Sunday, will add his game 400 in League.

Midfielder Xavi Hernandez , the player with the most matches was played in league with Barcelona, ​​continues to add records and if it is aligned against Betis on Sunday added his 400 game in the league.

Xavi, 32, last October equaled the record for league games as Barca, then held by Migueli (391), and has since been adding games and titles, as it has six league titles and a total of nineteen titles.

He debuted in the first team in the 1998-99 season, with the help of Louis van Gaal in the first leg of the Supercopa of Spain to Mallorca. Barca lost, but he scored (2-1).

It premiered in matches Champions League against Manchester United and Brondby and his League debut came on October 3, 1988 against Valencia in Mestalla (1-3).

If you play against Betis, Xavi added 694 official games (400 of them in the league). In the domestic championship, the midfielder has managed 43 goals and his game has evolved with Louis van Gaal, Frank Rijkaard and, especially, with Josep Guardiola.

It can boast of having one of the best records of Spanish football as a player active. Xavi has won a total of nineteen titles (six league), which is the most successful Barcelona player. (via MD)

[Former player] Milito: "If it continues this way, Messi will always win"

The Argentine praised the qualities of his friend and team mate and said it is 'worthy winner' of the FIFA Ballon d'Or.

Gaby Milito smiles again. His departure from Barcelona to return to the Independent , the team of his birth, has returned to top level football.

The Argentine, fully immersed in the preseason, he had time to talk about his team-mate, the Barca Messi . Only good words for which to many is the best footballer of the moment.

Current champion of FIFA Ballon d'Or, Messi has been won to pulse to equal Michel Platini, with his third serial reward. "There is one that stands out, which is Leo . It is fair winner. As long way, always going to win it, "said Milito .

Fifty-nine games, one goal and ten titles as Barca. Gaby Milito has been hard for Barca , but the lack of minutes he was forced to leave the team to return to Independiente. "It was a long time since I had the continuity in this tournament. I needed to have it, out of Barca , which was not an easy decision. I was looking for a competitive rate, which in recent seasons could not have, "said a Milito did not hesitate to add that back to their origins has always been his desire. "It was always in my head the fact of returning, I am not sorry."

'El Mariscal(The Marshal)', who trains for several days in Chapadmalal, looks forward to starting the Champions Argentina. (via MD)

Barcelona reached home safely or rest

In today's practice will not be injured Fontàs and Pedro.

The staff of FC Barcelona this morning landed safely at the airport of El Prat, after spending the night in Pamplona with the ticket to the quarterfinals of Copa del Rey insured and exercise from 12.30 pm to begin preparations for the match La Liga against Real Betis.

Barca coach Pep Guardiola gives no rest to his players and has prepared a session to 12.30 pm in the Joan Gamper Ciutat Esportiva with an eye on the visit of the Betis, Sunday at 21.30.

After the session, which will surely be recovery for the holders at the Reyno de Navarra, midfielder Javier Mascherano will appear at a news conference.

In the training they won't be Andreu Fontàs neither Pedro Rodríguez, arguably the bad news from yesterday's game, in which the Blaugrana won with comeback including (1-2). The defense must undergo surgery in the coming days, with a torn anterior cruciate ligament in his right knee, while the Canaries suffered discomfort and is doubtful for the clash. (via AS)

Abidal: Arsenal also rushes to for his move

English team has moved to know what the actual situation of French which renewal remains elusive.

The future of Abidal starts to leave the Nou Camp if you have to ignore the first information on a possible departure of the French full-back to the Premier League , where Arsenal would open the doors for his renewal is not successful with FC Barcelona . While news of recent days are contradictory, indications that the situation could have stalled, which would have given rise to other clubs come into the orbit of Abidal. Arsenal has moved to really know what their situation. Having regard to the success and the expectations it has raised in the Gunners' the return of Thierry Henry , bet big on the other great France of the past decade is seen as an option that Wenger is willing to bet strongly. Since last January 1 Abidal is free to negotiate their future with whoever is out but not yet to stay. (via MD)

Zubi: "He has left us very bad body the lesion of Fontás"

Barca's sporting director was upset about the low defender but says he does not think at this point sign.

The serious injury Andreu Fontàs at the Reyno de Navarra will not change the initial plans of Barça, he has no intention of going to the winter market signings. But Andoni Zubizarreta , Barca sports director, and said at halftime, before knowing the actual state of the knee of Banyoles, that "we plan to sign the moment," implying that only if you add another casualty to that of Yesterday this approach could change. Pep then made ​​it clear that only lay hold of the subsidiary.

Barca sporting director said the mishap Fontás "has left us very bad body at all. Have come down to the locker room to see how he was the guy and I could barely see anything in the first half," Zubi said during halftime of game against the set of José Luis Mendilibar, suggesting that the injury look bad.

Zubizarreta acknowledged that "we struggled to get into the game. Osasuna also all know that nothing ever does not give away. Here the parties are always very intense because the public pushes a lot," said. (via MD)

Cardoner: "The clásico motivates us a lot"

The Blaugrana vice president said the "commitment and struggle of our team".

Jordi Cardoner, vice president of social club, said at the premises of the Reyno de Navarra "we are all very motivated to a new clásico. It's never easy to deal with Madrid-level teams, but I'm comfortable with the commitment and struggle of our team. In a playoff was practically already sentenced in the Camp Nou to face again. "

The manager wanted Barca's injury Andreu Fontàs "not serious. ¿Transfers? Competition needs to strengthen the coaching staff," he said.

Meanwhile, Osasuna president Patxi Izco, accepted with resignation the deletion. "We could not do anything about a ship that also took alternates. We played well the first half and it was nice to get ahead, but it was clear that the tie was lost in Barcelona."

On his polemic declarations when doubting of the stomach ailments of Messi in the first leg, Izco didn't want more polemizar. "I just told that if Messi had a headache, I had another. What was I released a lot (" if he had a gut Leo, I hurt my h. .. "he said), and not worth repeating". (via MD)

Pinto: "Before the first clásicos it is the game against Betis"

Pinto avoided talking about the clásico next week.

Despite having only one branch with both Barca yesterday Sergi Roberto scored his third goal in as many games with the first team. "It's easier to mark, because the players have great quality, but the important thing was to win," Reus said. On the quarterfinal match against arch-rivals, the squad is confident of victory. "The Barça-Madrid are always very close, but hopefully win, as in recent games." Nor did he forget his friend Fontàs: "It was the worst news."

For his part, Captain Pinto yesterday declined to refer to the knockout quarter and said that "we must think about Sunday's game against Betis. The other will come."

Another homegrown players who played last night from the owner, Martin Montoya, admitted that "in the first part we left a little to see them come, but in the second we had more options with the ball played out." Also showed their support for injured Andreu Fontàs. "It was a shame, because he is a player we have a lot of love". (via MD)

Jordi Alba, before their decisive year: renews or leaves

Within the Valencia CF the reports in which links to Jordi Alba with FC Barcelona have created a certain uneasiness. And in the club 'che' are struggling in recent months to renovate the full-back of L'Hospitalet de Llobregat as the contract ends in 2013. The situation is clear: either Valencia or get renew this season, which comes less than a year to finish the contract, it will be more difficult to retain as much succulent to receive offers to arrive at any other club with the letter freedom.

In the Catalan football environment is quiet and so far, nobody wants to have any illusions about a possible return to the discipline of FC Barcelona. That would fulfill a dream, but now neither his family nor want Jordi own wishful thinking. They are aware that their present and immediate future are in Valencia and the Spanish national team and the summer is still far away. However, in the club azulgrana are also clear that if eventually released to by Jordi Alba would be very important to try to close a deal before the start of the Euro in Poland and Ukraine. The full-back of Valencia is settling in the team Vicente del Bosque and if curdles a good tournament with la Roja sure your contribution will soar even more. His buyout clause is 20 million euros. (via MD)

[Player Ratings; Copa; 1/8 Leg2] CA Osasuna - FC Barcelona (1-2)


Andreu Fontàs, injured, the bitter side of the game

Medical tests confirmed that the player has torn the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in his right knee. The player will undergo surgery in Barcelona in the coming days.

After 11 minutes, Andreu Fontàs couldn’t pick himself off the Reyno de Navarra pitch. The look of pain on his face sounded the warning alarms on the Barça bench. The first medical exam was administered after the medical staff carried the defender off the field. It pointed to an injury of the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL) in the right knee. Further tests at the University of Navarra Clinic confirmed all suspicions: the player sustained a torn ACL. Fontàs will undergo surgery to correct the injury in Barcelona in the coming days.

His teammates took to Twitter immediately to show their injured colleague their support:

Gerard Deulofeu: “Congratulations hake @SergiRoberto10! Be encouraged @fontas24! Great game today.”

Puyol: “We’re in the quarterfinals of the Cup but we’re sad because of Andreu Fontàs’ injury. Lots of encouragement Fonti.”

Cesc: “I’m saddened by the injury of my good friend @fontas24. We’ve qualified and now we must think about our game on Sunday, it will be difficult.”

Sergi Roberto: “A good victory at a difficult stadium. It’s a shame that my good colleague and friend @fontas24 was injured! #ànimsfontàs!”

The Club also wants to give maximum support to @fontas24 through the hashtag #animsfontas. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

Guardiola: “It will be an exciting tie for the spectators”

The Barça manager is very aware of the difficult challenge that his team will face in quarterfinal Cup tie against Real Madrid. He also believes that it will be the most attractive tie for supporters.

Guardiola reiterated that the Club will not buy new players in the winter transfer window and that he has faith in the reserve team.

It's going to happen. After knocking out Osasuna of the round of 16 of the King’s Cup, the team led by Josep Guardiola will face Real Madrid in the quarterfinals. The Barça boss referred to Real Madrid as “a great rival” and he highlighted that the quarterfinals will be “great and exciting for the spectators.” Guardiola also talked about the difficulty the tie represents for both teams, “both us and them are teams that, no matter what competition we are playing in, we try to win.”

When responding to the question about how he thinks the tie will affect both teams throughout the remainder of the competition, Guardiola said that “it seems as though, whatever the result is, that the world will end. If we go on or not the games in the Liga are assured. When you play against rivals like Real Madrid the possibilities of winning or losing are always there.”

The five point advantage that Mourinho’s team currently holds in the Liga will not have an effect on the the team, according to Guardiola, in the Cup tie: “if we were five points ahead we’d go into this tie to win it just as we will go to win it being five points behind, just like Real Madrid would. We are two team, two institutions that try to win everything that we compete in.”

Guardiola had special words of praise for the match-winning goalscorer, Sergi Roberto: “he can play anywhere, he’s too good, his start is great ... We needed someone that looked for spaces, that made us a bit deeper. His movements are good. I congratulate him.” The manager also had words for Martín Montoya: “Barça has a good right back for the future.”

Lastly, Guardiola reiterated that he will not seek to sign any new players during the winter transfer window and that he has complete confidence in the reserves: “with the injuries we’ve had this year, we’ll need the reserves a lot. They need to get ready. We have a reserve side, and I believe in many of them. The fewer we are the more difficult it will be to move forward.” (via FCBarcelona.cat)

Piqué: "There are no favorites in a Barça-Madrid"

Gerard Pique acknowledged that "Barça-Madrid there are no favorites, no matter as it comes either to the Bernabeu but we will try to win and get the best result possible."

FC Barcelona's central Gerard Pique has highlighted the difficulty of winning at Osasuna on home soil, as "very complicated because it is always too tight, durosy are always difficult to overcome. In the first part has cost us, but in the second have been higher and is always good to come here and win. "

Asked about the two upcoming Clásicos that has brought the draw for the quarterfinals of the Copa del Rey, Piqué said "is what has touched, calendar, we will have to prepro well as we always do and try to qualify for semifinals and win the Cup "

Asked who was the favorite, the Catalan centre-back recalled that "Barça-Madrid there are no favorites, no matter either as it comes, go to the stadium to try to win and get the best result possible." (via AS)

The Clásicos of Cup, January 18 and 25 at 22:00 o'clock

You know the times the quarterfinals of the Copa del Rey. After the victory of Barcelona at the Reyno de Navarra, the clash between Real Madrid and Barcelona will take place on 18 and 25 January, both times at 22.00, as announced by the Real Federación Española de Fútbol. The first crash will be in Santiago Bernabéu and the turn in Camp Nou. (via AS)

Maxwell: "I lived in Barcelona a football lesson"

The Brazilian Maxwell was presented Thursday as a new player in the Paris Saint-Germain, a club praised for his "ambition to win titles and grow".

"The motivation was to come of the project and the prospects for a club that is willing to grow," said the former player of Barcelona, ​​who signed with the French organization for the next three years.

Maxwell, 30, who has spent two and a half seasons at the Catalan club, where he arrived from Inter Milan, Barcelona said he left "many friends" and a great learning experience. "It was a period in which I learned a lot of things, a lesson in football," said the Brazilian.

Despite acknowledging that "the current level of Barcelona is very high," Maxwell was not considered the ambassador of the philosophy of the game in their new destination. "I will try to adapt to whatever you ask the coach (Carlo Ancelotti), which has proven he knows how to win many titles," he said.

"The biggest hope here is to win, win, learn more, try to contribute something positive to the group and that work is rewarded with titles," he said.

Before signing for PSG, Maxwell spoke of the club with teammate Eric Abidal and Barcelona said he also met his compatriot Nene, who agreed on the selection under-23.

Maxwell left Barça 74 games, 3 goals and 10 degrees after

It was July 15, 2009 when Barça reached an agreement with Inter Milan to sign Maxwell for 5 million euros advantage then held talks with the Italian club by Zlatan Ibrahimovic, who also shared with Max Mino Raiola as a representative. Seventy-four games, three goals, ten titles and two and a half years after it Raiola has led to the PSG, Barca will pay 4 million euros. Maxwell, who in his first season he played 32 games and he even played the title to Abidal in the left lane, you have not felt a major part of the Pep Guardiola.

VIDEO: www.sport.es

Fontàs can say good-bye to the season

Bad luck for Andreu Fontàs. The Catalan player was injured on 11 minutes of the first part and the thing not look good.

Andreu Fontàs on Thursday played his fifth game as a starter with the first team this season. It was a good opportunity to vindicate, but everything went to hell in 11 minutes. The defender lost a fumble and try to go back, the leg she was "stuck". He tried to continue the play, but could not. He lay on the ground and betrayed signs of pain and that something important was happening.

He retired from the field on a stretcher from the locker room, along with two crutches, climbed into an ambulance and was taken to University Hospital in Pamplona.

Early reports speak of that has affected the cruciate ligaments of the knee of the right leg. "Now we are testing, but it did not look good," Guardiola admitted in the press conference after the game. Some unconfirmed reports, took it for granted that the season may be over for him. "We're in the quarterfinals of the Cup but saddened by the Fontàs Andreu injury. Fonti Many spirits!" He wanted from his Facebook page Carles Puyol. (via SPORT)

On first examination it appears that Andreu Fontàs has injured his cruciate ligaments in his right knee - more tests will be done. (FCB twitter)

[Copa del Rey; 1/8 final; Leg1] CA Osasuna 1 - 2 FC Barcelona

Two goals from Alexis and Sergi Roberto gave Barça a 1-2 win in Pamplona tonight which safely sees them through to a quarter final clash with Real Madrid, with the first leg set for 22.00 next Wednesday.

Job done. Barça duly got through their last 16 tie against Osasuna with a comfortable win in Pamplona. Guardiola's men had to come back from a goal down in the second half after Leka had put the hosts ahead before the break, but Alexis and Sergi Roberto did the job and Barça will now face Real Madrid in the first leg of the quarter finals next week - the first classico of 2012, after seven meetings in 2011.

That first leg is at the Bernabeu next Wednesday, with the return a week later at the Camp Nou, also at 22.00.

On a cold and foggy night in Pamplona and with Barça already 4-0 up from the first leg, there was a slow start to the game, with the sideways pass the dominant feature of the early exchanges from both teams. Barça were happy to take the game easy, but they suffered a blow on 15 minutes when Fontas suffered a bad looking injury. Abidal came on for the youngster and just after he came on, Barça were nearly caught cold by Osasuna after the Frenchman lost possession.

It was Thiago who was most looking for the ball for Barça, whilst the ever active Pedro was full of enthusiasm in a game that had few chances to warm the Pamplona crowd. Osasuna only really threatened at the end of the first half and were rewarded by a Leka goal – the first that Pinto had conceded in the Cup this season.

Guardiola's team came out rather more fired up after the break and were soon laying siege to the Basque team's area, getting the equaliser from almost their first occasion when Alexis put away a great Adriano cross from the left. Soon after, the Chilean went off to be replaced by Leo Messi who showed the same enthusiasm that he brings to any game. Then the boss was forced to make another change as Pedro came off with what looked like a slight thigh strain and Busquets came on.

That substitution meant that Sergi Roberto moved up into a false number nine role and after a few minutes he was on the scoresheet after Messi had set him up in the box to ensure a quarter final spot. So now the attention will turn to Madrid and next Wednesday's trip to the Bernabeu. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

[Technical Data]
Osasuna: Asier Riesgo; Marc Bertrán, Lolo, Miguel Flaño, Satrústegui (Hermosa, m.73); Puñal, Raoul Loe; Cejudo (Postigo, m.80), Roberto Torres (Raúl García, m.67), Calleja; y Lekic.

Barcelona: Pinto; Montoya, Piqué, Fontás (Abidal, m.14), Adriano; Mascherano, Thiago, Sergi Roberto; Cuenca, Alexis (Messi, m.58) y Pedro (Busquets, m.70).

Goals: 1-0, m.41: Lekic. 1-1, m.49: Alexis. 1-2, m.72: Sergi Roberto.

Referee: Velasco Carballo (Madrid Committee). Admonished the Calleja (m.35) of Osasuna.

Incidents: Second leg of the knockout round of the Copa del Rey match at the Reyno de Navarra stadium before 12,498 spectators. Barcelona won 4-0 in the first leg at Camp Nou. Both teams posed with a banner of the Spanish Association of Rett syndrome.

Pedro, virtually ruled out the first leg at the Bernabeu

Initial observations indicate that it is almost impossible to reach the quarterfinal round against Madrid.

All indications are that Pedro Rodriguez will not be in the first leg of quarterfinals of Copa del Rey in the Santiago Bernabeu . It is almost impossible to reach the first clásico and is virtually ruled out as they have given the first medical observations that have been done in the Reyno de Navarra.

It is necessary to remember that the canary forward, one of the most active during the second time, he has retired of the game land in the minute 68 with nuisances in the later part of the thigh of the left leg and it has been substituted by Busquets. (via MD)

[Youth] PSG edges Barça's U17 B side out of the Al Kass International Cup

Barça’s U17 B side drew with Paris Saint-Germain (2-2) in the Al Kass Cup. The Catalans will play for fifth spot on Monday. García Pimienta’s men are level on points with PSG, but the French team will go on to the next round on goal differential. Sandro Ramírez was named man of the match.

The U17 B side played its second game of the Al Kass International Cup in Doha, Qatar this Thursday afternoon. The match against Paris Saint-Germain ended in a two-all draw. In the sixth minute, Coman game the French team the lead after a fantastic individual play. Barça composed itself and managed to put two past their rivals. Sandro Ramírez scored the equalizer after Edwelle's good play down the left and a good assist from El Haddadi. In the 35th minute, Colina scored the go-ahead goal, with Ebwelle and El Haddadi once again proving pivotal in the play.

García Pimienta’s men perfectly controlled the first half with 55% of the possession. But Dembele Mousa’s second half goal gave PSG passage to the next round thanks to goal differential. In the first game, Barça beat Al-Ahly 3-0 while PSG put 9 past the Egyptians. The three teams were all in Group B, and PSG will go through to the next round.

This is the tournament’s first year, it’s organized by the television station Al Kass along with the Aspire Foundation and the Sports Association of Qatar. The competition brings together the promising young U17 talent with the goal of increasing interest in football in Qatar ahead of the 2022 World Cup. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

FC Barcelona, tops the IFFHS ranking for 2011

Barça, after winning the award in 2007 and 2009, was named the best club in the world in 2011 and beat out Real Madrid and Vélez Sarsfield, second and third, respectively.

The International Federation of Football History & Statistics (IFFHS) has published its annual worldwide club ranking for 2011, FC Barcelona, after finishing the year with a handful of titles, has finished first. After top place finishes in 2007 and 2009, this is the third time Barça has topped the IFFHS ranking. The team finished with 367 points, quite a bit more than the second place finisher, Real Madrid (312 points), and third, Veléz Sarsfield (271 points).

Barça’s 367 points are the third highest mark ever awarded to a team since the IFFHS started giving out the award in 1991. Only Juventus in 1993 (with 5.5 more points) and AC Milan in 1995 (with only half a point more) achieved more points than Guardiola’s men. At the time Juventus and AC Milan topped the list, however, Serie A was the dominant league in the world. Therefore the Italian teams received five points per victory as opposed to four currently awarded to current-day teams. With that in mind, the points awarded in 2011 to Barça single the team out as the best in the world.

Furthermore, Barça also finished atop the IFFHS ranking as the best team in December. FC Barcelona didn’t lose a single game that month. (via FCBarcelona.cat)

[The Top 10 of 2011]
1. FC Barcelona (ESP) 367,0
2. Reial Madrid (ESP) 312,0
3. Vélez Sarsfield (ARG) 271,0
4. Manchester United (ENG) 270,0
5. Manchester City (ENG) 239,0
6. Santos (BRA) 238,0
7. Universidad de Chile (XI) 235,5
8. Benfica (POR) 235,0.
9. Porto (POR) 231,0
10. Universidad Católica (XI) 230,0